You’ve probably been over every room in your home with a fine-tooth comb looking for potential danger zones as you child-proof every sharp edge and plug socket.
But have you taken a look at what potential hazards are in your garden?
This is often an area that we overlook as parents, because let’s face it, in the UK we don’t get anywhere near enough fine weather to enjoy our outdoor spaces!
But your kids will want to spend as much time playing in the garden as they can, and for your own sanity it’s never too early to cast your eye around it and think about how to child-proof.
So with summer just around the corner, here are my top tips for child-proofing your garden.
Get a play pen
For really young babies, who are just starting to roll and crawl, you may want to get a play pen for outside if you don’t want to be on your feet pulling them back to their safe spot on the lawn every 10 seconds.
Find something with a bit of space that’s appropriate for your child’s age and remember they still need to be supervised when they’re inside it.
Look for poisonous plants
You may not have a knowledge of plants to rival Alan Titchmarsh, but you do need to be aware of what plants are in your garden and which might not be safe.
If you do have anything poisonous, consider getting rid of it or making it so that your child cannot reach the plant.
Teach your kids to never eat anything they pick themselves unless a grown up has told them it’s ok.
Check your furniture
Sharp edges and surfaces that your child might be tempted to climb should be made safe.
Check for any loose or protruding nails that could snag your child as they run past.
Give them shade
Being outside is brilliant for kids. But even the great British summer and all its dreary rain can be dangerous when that sun gets intense.
Sun screen is a must, but keeping your child out of direct sunlight, particularly in the sun’s peak hours, is the best way to protect their delicate skin. Check out the NHS website for more tips on sun safety.
If you don’t have lots of trees to rely on, consider investing in a parasol for outdoor furniture, or if you have a pool or hot tub check out a hot tub umbrella to give you peace of mind.
Put tools out of reach
Any power tools, metal tools such as spades and rakes or plant food needs to be stored out of reach. If you don’t have space for a shed, consider a smaller plastic lock box that keeps your tools dry but away from little hands.
Check your fence
Look for gaps, holes and weak spots in fences and in gates – you will be surprised at how resourceful kids can be when it comes to escaping.
If something needs fixing, try not to put it off.
Protect the plants
You can buy small rows of bamboo rods, mini-fences or wire mesh to block off parts of the garden that you would rather your children didn’t tear through and destroy.
Make it fun
You need to be safety conscious, but your garden should still be a fun place for your children!
Get some outdoor toys, such as a paddling pool, slide or a tent. They don’t have to cost a fortune, even a sprinkler will delight them!
Have you child-proofed your garden? Are there any particular areas you are worried are not safe?